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Wilderness Programs?


I've been browsing through your website in particular "Help for Struggling Teens".

I have in the past looked at wilderness camps in Canada and also a military academy in Canada (with him having a juvenile record would prevent him from traveling to the U.S). I'm not sure if these would be options for Jordan after he is released from the young offenders centre. He does receive help there as well. Would a private facility or a government run residential or wilderness be beneficial to him after he is released (which is May 30). A government run facility would be accessed through Children and Family Services (this was something the judge had ordered they be involved prior to his release for further assessment and treatment). When I contacted them a month ago I got the impression they aren't too willing to be involved.

We did speak to J___ about this possibly happening this weekend when we saw him. We told him his behaviours have to change. Do you know of any reputable programs in Canada? We had sent J___ to a boarding school when he was in grade 7 and he was expelled after 4 months and we ended with non-refunded tuition, which was expensive, so I'm apprehensive about this.

There are 2 wilderness programs I've researched some - one is private and is about a 2 hour flight away – it’s on Vancouver Island. The other one has to be accessed through Child and Family Services or AADAC and is a 2 hour drive from our place. Both are in the mountains. The website for Vancouver Island is and the other is Enviros Wilderness School Association - Base Camp. I'm not sure if these should be alternatives to follow-up after his custody part. Your opinion would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,



Hi E.,

I’m not a big fan of Wilderness Programs, Boot Camps, or Brat Camps. Research suggests they are not very effective in the long term. Boarding schools, however, do have a much better track record. The ones I’m familiar with in Canada are:

· Brentwood College School
· Bronte College of Canada
· Havergal College
· Ridley College
· Rosseau Lake College
· Sedbergh School
· Shawnigan Lake School
· St. Andrew's College
· St. Michaels University School
· Stanstead College
· The Bishop Strachan School

I cannot comfortably recommend any other alternatives.


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am completely agree with the point that boarding schools are more effective than boot camps, wilderness programs, brat camps etc. Boarding schools provide a caring and loving environment which is helpful for students.

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